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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Gov't undecided over appeal on M'kini publishing permit


The government has not decided on whether it would appeal the Court of Appeal's decision yesterday to dismiss the Home Ministry's appeal over the granting of a publishing permit to Malaysiakini.

"I will check with my legal adviser," Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today when asked about the issue during a press conference in the Parliament.

The ministry had attempted to overturn a High Court ruling that the Home Ministry should grant Malaysiakini a publishing permit.
The government still has the option of appealing the decision to the Federal Court in light of yesterday’s decision.

Before yesterday’s decision, the government’s lawyers had argued that the granting of printing permits was a privilege and not a right for the publications applying for one.

The government has yet to give any grounds for their rejection ofMalaysiakini’s printing permit application, and their lawyers have said that the government can decide to reject permits in order to prevent congestion in the newspaper marketplace.

The High Court had earlier also ruled that Malaysiakini should be given a publishing permit.

Amendments to the Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA) last year removed the Home Minister’s absolute powers to approve or reject printing permit applications.

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